The CVRD’s finance manager Natalie Wehner delivered a report to the board outlining the status of 81 capital projects in the district, and detailed which ones may face delays due to COVID-19 and other snags. (File photo)

CVRD may have to delay 11 capital projects scheduled for 2020

More than 50 of the 81 projects are complete or are schedule for the year

The approximately $5.9-million Mill Bay sewer project that was scheduled to be completed in 2020 could be postponed.

It’s among a substantial list of projects whose immediate future is up in the air. The Mill Bay sewer project has hit delays in the project’s timeline due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, and the approval process for the project to proceed.

A staff report from Natalie Wehner, the Cowichan Valley Regional District’s financial director, outlining the status of the 81 capital projects included in the CVRD’s budget for 2020, states that 41 of the projects are on track to be completed on schedule this year, 18 have not yet begun, 10 are complete, 11 could possibly have to be delayed and one will not be completed this year.

RELATED STORY: CVRD RECEIVES AWARD FOR ANNUAL FINANCIAL REPORTING

Approximately 24 per cent of the CVRD’s $100 million budget in 2020 is for capital projects approved during the 2020 budget deliberations, or carried forward from previous years’ budgets.

“Potential delays are due to staff time, availability of materials, potential consideration of changes to the projects and requirements for electoral approval of borrowing bylaws,” Wehner said in the report.

“The one project that will not be complete [a $20,000 well rehabilitation project at the Dogwood Ridge water system] is due to considerations of funding options and whether it would be more advantageous to save up the funds or borrow to pay for the project.”

Wehner reported that the $3.7-million water treatment upgrade of the Saltair water system could possibly be delayed because authorization of the loan needed for the project to proceed requires an alternative approval process to be held to determine if the electorate wants to borrow for it.

An AAP requires that 10 per cent or more of eligible voters must sign and submit response forms in opposition to the project to stop the borrowing process from proceeding.

RELATED STORY: COUNCIL CHOOSES AAP OVER REFERENDUM TO GET VOTER APPROVAL ON NEW RCMP DETACHMENT SPENDING

The $2-million water treatment upgrade at the Shawnigan Lake North water system may also be delayed, also due to the need for loan authorization and an AAP, and the new $300,000 water reservoir at the Mesachie Lake water system could be postponed because road work is required in the summer months for access to the site.

A $230,000 collection system upgrade at the Cowichan Bay sewer system, a $124,000 upgrade at the Shawnigan Beach Estates sewer system, and a $100,000 upgrade at Eagle Heights sewer system may also be delayed due to the need for further investigation of the projects.

RELATED STORY: CVRD TO RECEIVE ALMOST $8 MILLION FOR WATER PROJECTS

A $35,000 upgrade at the Youbou water system, and a $20,000 generator project at the Buena Vista Place in the Cowichan Bay sewer system may also have to be delayed because of the lack of availability of electricians.

The CVRD is also reconsidering a $30,000 project for outdoor fitness equipment at Kerry Park.



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

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